Secret Library Podcast


Secret Library Podcast Episodes

#13 LeAnna Smith



The cover. How have we waited this long to talk about the cover? All of us have certainly bought books based on their beautiful covers, so I had to get an expert's perspective on how a cover comes to life.

This week my guest is Leanna Smith, Executive Creative Director and Owner at Weller Smith design. She's worked in publishing for over 16 years, and has done everything from paperback novels to cookbooks to interior design and coffee table books. She has worked in print, branding, and web, and works with individuals, non-profits and prestigious publishing houses such as Hachette Book Group; Stewart, Tabori & Chang; and Workman Publishing among many others.

Can't wait for you to hear all about the world of cover design. You may never look at a book the same way again...

Listen on iTunes | Weller Smith Design | Instagram | Twitter | Pinterest

Show Notes From Episode 13 With LeAnna Smith

  • Judging a book by its cover (2:15)

  • The role of the cover in eBook and digital publishing (3:30)

  • Audiobook covers (5:00) Mentioned: Rivers of London Cover Versions

  • Re-interpreting covers for different markets (7:45) Mentioned: Alice in Wonderland with new cover | Sam Potts episode on interior design

  • Touching everyone's books (10:20)

  • The interior-exterior disconnect (11:00)

  • Creative control of the cover & texture options (12:00) Mentioned: Spot Varnish

  • Cookbooks and even more design options (14:10)

  • Trends in covers & the end of the jacket (15:15) Mentioned: Jojo Moyes & Me Before You's font cover

  • Coloring book covers (20:00) Cher Kaufmann Mandala coloring books

  • Re-packaging books for different price points & markets (20:45)

  • Why publishing is a little like outlet shopping (22:00)

  • International covers (25:30) Mentioned: Harry Potter's Cover for Lithuania (actually Finland)

  • Reading with office supplies (27:30)

  • The cover design process step-by-step (28:30)

  • Big stores throwing their weight around (31:40)

  • Author input on covers (33:45)

  • Working with individual authors (35:20)

  • Publishing gift items and planners (37:30)

  • Print-on-demand design (39:15)

  • Leanna's entry into book design (39:45)

  • Print is not dead (42:00)

  • On LeAnna's nightstand : Fascinate by Sally Hogshead | Living Forward by Michael Hyatt

  • The hot tip for stock photography (44:00)